My First Week in Scrintal: The Visual Note-Taker’s Dream Canvas

Navigating my digital workspace has been a delightful journey this week, with Scrintal taking center stage as a fascinating networked note-taking app that mirrors the experience of physical notecards on a desk.

My First Week in Scrintal: The Visual Note-Taker’s Dream Canvas

It’s been a fun week for my digital workspace. There has been a lot of exploration and I’m enjoying seeing it as a whole comprising of tools that compliment each other. One of the tools that I worked in this week was Scrintal — a networked note-taking app which provides a beautiful infinite canvas for visual thinkers. In Scrintal, each note appears as a card which you can move around and connect with others.

What I’ve really enjoyed about Scrintal thus far is that I feel like I’m working at my desk, pen in hand and notecards laid out in front of me. For most of university, I made handwritten notes and I loved being able to gather the cards related to one idea and visualise the concept that I’m attempting to make sense of. Scrintal is the digital version of this experience, taking the analog process further — allowing us to work with an infinite number of cards, to connect multiple streams of thought and to add media like photos, videos and links.

Below are two examples of use cases that I experimented with over the past week.

Book Notes

I began with making notes from the book that I’m currently reading — At the Existentialist Cafe. I worked in the desktop app for about 2 hours and just basked in that “new app” experience of manoeuvring your way around and figuring things out. It was glorious.

Monthly Overview

As the week progressed, I played around with a monthly overview layout using daily cards.

Pros & Cons

Favourite features

  • Visual concept of desk with note cards
  • Infinite canvas
  • Simple user interface and intuitive onboarding
  • Bidirectional linking of notecards
  • Ability to organize notes using tags
  • Slash commands in the text editor
  • Many familiar block types
  • Useful keyboard shortcuts
  • Easy workspace clean-up
  • Concise tutorials and guides on their website and in their YouTube Learning Center

Features that need improvement or implementation

  • Dark mode (not currently available)
  • Templates (not currently available) — including inline templates that can be accessed via a slash command or keyboard shortcut and inserted into cards, board templates and community templates
  • Checkboxes for to-do lists (not currently available)
  • Search — at the moment, we are only able to search for words present in the title of a card or board. Search needs to be optimised for content within cards.
  • Mobile app — while there is currently no Android or iOS app, their browser functionality is very well optimised. I’ve taken notes using Google Chrome on my phone and have had no issues. I was actually surprised at how well it worked.

Wrap-up

  • Overall, visual learners will especially enjoy Scrintal’s infinite canvas and note linking capabilities.
  • I found the pricing to be reasonable at $60.00 USD ($408.59 TTD) for their annual subscription.
  • Given that this product is in early access, it feels great to know that current features will be optimized and new features should be added in the future.

Have you tried Scrintal and if yes, what are some of your use cases?